Income Tax Department seizes Rs 7.54 crore from premises of medical professionals in Assam

The I-T department conducted searches in 29 locations of Assam on January 8, 2021

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The Income Tax Department conducted a search and survey action and seized total cash amount of approximately Rs 7. 54 crore from various residential and business premises of several medical professionals and their allied business in Assam on January 8, the Finance Ministry said.

The I-T Department carried out the search and survey action at 29 locations in Guwahati, Nalbari and Dibrugarh on January 8, 2021, following reports of alleged discrepancies by renowned doctors and other medical professionals of Assam. In Nalbari, an amount of Rs 1.76 crore cash was seized, the ministry said.

The ministry said in a release that the main allegations against the groups were that they had grossly understated their medical receipts both in their individual capacities and the turnovers in their hospitals or nursing homes, diagnostic centres and pharmaceutical business.

During the course of the search and seizure operation, it has been established that the groups engage in out-of-books transactions. Many documents and cash receipt slips were found which highlight the hugely suppressed turnover in the case of medical professionals and their hospitals or clinics. The quantum of suppressed turnover detected in few cases alone appears to be above Rs 50-60 crore. Further, the net profit shown in the medical or pharma business is also extremely low.

The cash seized was found to be unexplained in the hands of various hospitals and medical professionals, the ministry said. It said papers of huge parcels of land or immovable assets purchased in cash were also seized.

Handwritten notes and diaries of investments made in immovable assets in cash of around Rs 20 crore were also seized, the ministry said. It said the cash generated was found to be diverted in the building of new hospitals, reconstruction of nursing homes and acquisition of undisclosed assets. In one case, it was found that an amount close to Rs 20 crore was undisclosed.

The ministry stated that daily receipts were found to be digitally maintained in Excel/hard disk at Medical clinics that had not been recorded in the books of accounts. In the case of another assessee, the annual receipts were approximately Rs. 15-20 crore, while in the audited books, he had shown the gross receipt of around Rs.5 crore only. Hence, it is apparent that in the case of this particular assessee, suppression for each year should be around Rs 10-15 crore, the ministry said.

In all, unexplained investment, receipts, expenses exceeding Rs 100 crore has been unearthed in the search and seizure action. Further investigations are in progress, the ministry added.

First Published:Jan. 12, 2021, 8:39 p.m.

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